Counter Surviellance/Slipstream Zahya (3rd at APAC)

nbkelly 562

This deck went 3-2 overall at APAC, winning it's only game in the cut, and winning two games during swiss against Jemison and another sportsmetal.

In the cut I won against sportsmetal.

I lost against Jemison and PD in the swiss.

During the Jemison game I won, my opponent landed not one, not two, but three booms. All for value. Obelus is a real enabler of a card.

The Combo

The Plan

If your opponent knows what you're doing, and they've stacked a server high, and you can sniff a border control a mile away, don't panic

First, you choose a token piece of ICE (there should be one on archives or a remote) that is rezzed. Then you install Slipstream.

Then you install counter-surveillance, boomerang whichever of innermost-R&D or token that you can't break, and cast counter surveillance on the remote.

Slipstream will let you jump to the innermost on R&D, which you can safely break to gain access with Counter Surveillance.

This won me a game in the previous antarctic continentals vs. Click Thief Mirrormorph, but I didn't have a chance to use it today (no good victims). If that's too much jank, cut exactly those two cards to get to a 40 card deck.

10 comments
15 Aug 2021 tzeentchling

That's a very weird interaction that feels unintuitive but the wording appears to allow it. Good job finding that loophole!

15 Aug 2021 RickRageLa

such a cool deck

16 Aug 2021 gilesdavis

List 10/10, meme 11/10

22 Aug 2021 Xak

I'm still trying to wrap my head around this combo - since Slipstream requires you to pass a piece of ice, does this mean that this will only work against unrezzed BCs? And if the target is an inner-most ice, why doesn't the corp always have an opportunity to rez and fire a BC before you make it that far (i.e. past the inner-most ice on the remote) into the server?

22 Aug 2021 nbkelly

@Xak the idea is 90% of the games you play, you will have forced the corp to rez the innermost ICE already poking for accesses (before they realize what your deck does). Once they figure out, they will either stack R&D (you no longer need to poke this server) or stack a remote.

Obviously installing a border control innermost is good, but no corp really does that vs. criminals unless they happened to draw two or three in the opener (and weyland isn't good enough for that to be common right now).

The requirements for the combo are just that you have a server with one rezzed piece of ICE you can use to bounce from, border control is not the innermost piece of ICE on R&D, and you can break both of the target ICE (or one, and boomer the other).

You can usually force the corp to put a value ICE on a server they don't want to defend (archives, or a random remote) considering what the good corps are in the meta right now, and when they do they're essentially giving you the tools you need to win.

22 Aug 2021 Xak

@nbkelly I'm definitely still thinking of it incorrectly here, but my understanding was that if you're trying to get into a remote, you're using Counter Surveillance on the remote, hopping to the poorly defended server, marking the run as successful there, but still getting the accesses on the stacked remote. But my reading of Slipstream was that you had to get past an ice in the same position, i.e. the innermost ice on the stacked server, in order to jump to the poorly defended one, which would necessitate giving the corp a window to use BC.

22 Aug 2021 nbkelly

If you're trying to get into a remote, you cannot use Slipstream (among the many things that make this card bad, is that you cannot jump to remotes).

The use case is:

  • There's a stack of ICE on R&D
  • ICE position is counted from the innermost to the outermost
  • Counter Surveillance allows you to target any server (not just centrals)
  • You choose a poorly defended server (one ICE on archives, remote, etc)
  • You install slipstream, and play counter surveillance targeting the poorly defended server
  • You break (or walk through) the innermost ICE, allowing you to use slipstream
  • You name the innermost ICE on R&D (or sometimes HQ) as your target, and move to the approach stage for that ICE (the run continues normally from that point)
  • Because all servers are valid targets for counter-surveillance, it doesn't matter where the run gets redirected to, the effect will still apply on that server

The corporation will definitely still have a window to pop border control, but that will not matter because 9 games out of 10 you will not have given them the ability to rez a border control on that server.

22 Aug 2021 Xak

Ah, that makes a lot more sense! It's still a little unclear to me that the "attacked" server is the redirect target rather than the one selected when you popped Counter Surveillance, though. Is there a ruling for that interaction somewhere?

22 Aug 2021 nbkelly

Nisei CR 6.1.2 defines/specifies attacked server.

Attacked server basically just means the server that you're currently running, and redirections and moving change the attacked server based on where the runner ends up.

22 Aug 2021 Xak

Good to know, that definitely wasn't on my radar before.

Thanks for the breakdown. Excited to give this deck a try.